Back in 2013, we told you about Boobies Rock!, which sent hot girls into bars to sell merchandise emblazoned with the company's name that supposedly raised money to fight cancer — although many, if not most, of the proceeds allegedly went into the pocket of the organization's founder, Adam Shryock. Over the years that followed, Shryock went to jail several times for reasons related to this and other scams, and now he's headed back again, for failing to file a tax return in regard to his ill-gotten gains.
At the time of our original report, websites such as BoobiesRockStore.org had already vanished, but remarkably, a company blog continues to linger online. It declares that "Boobies Rock! is a creative blend of music, sports, fashion and pop culture. Established in September 2010, Boobies Rock! has quickly grown to become one of the leading advocates for the awareness of breast cancer across the U.S. Our mission is simple; to create awareness through fun, fashionable and humorous clothing and accessories. Keep checking back for fun news, pictures, and more!!"
Most of the young women employed by Boobies Rock! in Colorado and beyond thought they were working for an outfit with a big charity component — and customers undoubtedly did as well, due to a strategy portrayed in a 2013 lawsuit filed by the Colorado Attorney General's Office (it's accessible below) as purposefully misleading. Here's an excerpt:
Shryock and his employees instructed promotion models to approach potential customers and represent that they were "taking donations" rather than selling merchandise. The models were further instructed to refer to BR as a "charitable company" and to only disclose that BR was a for-profit entity if asked.
Shryock told models to tell customers that a percentage of the BR's net proceeds would go to charity. Some models report that they were told to say anywhere from 40 percent to 80-90 percent of BR revenue went to charity, others were told to be vague about the amount of money going to charity.
Some people apparently were so convinced that Boobies Rock! was a charity that they offered cash donations rather than buying items. These gifts were gladly accepted and combined with other funds, the lawsuit maintained. Likewise, managers at assorted bars invaded by Boobies Rock! crews were allegedly told that employees were "taking contributions for breast cancer-related causes."
How much was collected? Between June 2011 and December 2012, the main Boobies Rock! account at Wells Fargo showed deposits of $1,074,323.26, with a little more than half the deposits made in cash, the lawsuit said.
As for Shryock, he used the Boobies Rock! account for what the lawsuit describes as "personal expenditures" — such as $18,500 withdrawn in order to purchase a BMW. He's also said to have dipped into this greenback pool to pay his bar tab and subscribe to an online dating service.
In addition, Boobies Rock! was accused of invoking the names of actual breast cancer charities to make it seem more legitimate. An example can be found in the most recent item on the "Boobies Rock!" blog, dated October 2011. The item declares: "We are extremely excited to announce that we have just sent a $25,000 donation to the Young Survival Coalition!!" However, the lawsuit contended that this donation was actually made to settle a lawsuit from Young Survival Coalition, which hadn't given "Boobies Rock!" permission to use its name or trademark in solicitation materials.
This complaint wasn't the first to target Shryock or affiliated companies, including The Se7ven Group and Say No 2 Cancer, both of which were named in the Colorado AG's complaint. Take this August 2011 post on the Ripoff Report website:
I am a previous employee of the company Boobies Rock! and although I've defended the company in the past, I quit my position in May when I realized that none of the donations had been made to the various non-profits that Mr. Adam Shryock had pledged to donate to, as promised. I was a promotional hiring manager in San Francisco and likely reached out to you point of contact that he works with, as I was sent to travel to hundreds of cities for NFL and college football games. After I left the company Mr. Shryock continued to use my e-mail account as if I were still working for him. I advise doing a background check on this person and his company. Adam Shryock is currently in a lawsuit with Keep A Breast for using their slogan "I Love Boobies" previous to using Boobies Rock! (which he only changed the logo after several threats from Keep A Breast at taking him to court).
At first, Shryock was able to keep "Boobies Rock!" functioning despite trips to court — but that operation, The Se7ven Group and Say No 2 Cancer were put on hold in 2013 via a temporary restraining order.
The TRO was still in effect in January 2014 when Shryock was sentenced to fourteen days in jail for ignoring it. Indeed, in August 2013, mere weeks after the AG's office had lowered the boom on Boobies Rock!, Shryock had created a new "charity" dubbed I Heart This Bar, in which models sold merchandise at college football tailgate events. The proceeds supposedly went to a "scholarship fund," but the AG's office dubbed it yet another moneymaking gambit for Shryock.
In January 2015, Shryock was back in court, accused of hiring models to sell merch at bars and tailgating gatherings that supposedly benefited either Cancer Care or Stupid Cancer, both legit charities, despite the aforementioned restraining order.
Moreover, the groups hadn't authorized him to fundraise on their behalf, and a Stupid Cancer rep testified that the organization received no money from Shryock's efforts.
For his part, Shryock insisted that he was only a "consultant" in the enterprise. But a judge didn't buy it and sentenced him to six months in stir for contempt of court.
A few months later, in April 2015, Shryock was hit with a separate fraud charge, this one related to an alleged $1 million scheme involving mattresses whose sales were supposed to benefit refugees. The following year, after pleading guilty in the matter, he was sentenced to another ninety days in the hoosgow, plus four years probation.
The latest? U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge Michael Watanabe has sentenced Shryock to twelve months in prison for failing to file a tax return for his ill-gotten Boobies Rock! gains.
The U.S. Attorney's Office maintains that during the years Shryock was under investigation, his accounts registered 2,200 cash deposits totaling more than $1.8 million. He's also said to have earned $2.4 million in income operating Boobies Rock! and other businesses between 2011 and 2013, not to mention revenues he neglected to report in 2010, while he was living in California. As a result, he's also been ordered to pay restitution to the Internal Revenue Service in the amount of $430,970.
There's no telling how he plans to raise this sum. But he's got a year to think about it.
Click to read the original Boobies Rock! complaint.